I must take exception to some of Clarkston Mayor Haven’s comments about the Freedom of Information Act lawsuit the city lost in the Michigan Supreme Court.
My law firm represented Susan Bisio in that suit. Haven says the documents the city fought so hard to keep secret were “never viewed by any city official before their recent release.”
The documents were correspondence to and from the Clarkston city attorney, an officer appointed by the city council, whose office and duties are defined in the city charter.
Haven’s statement tries to perpetuate the city’s argument that the city attorney is somehow separate from and not associated with the city. The Supreme Court rejected that view.
Haven also says the city concealed the documents “on principle.” The “principle” the city fought to uphold was the argument that city officers and employees can keep secret off-premises files of documents compiled in the course of their official functions and that the taxpayers who pay them for that work can’t see anything in those files.
This is far from the “transparency” Haven touts.